I can tell it’s a New Year because I’m getting lots of requests to speak at conferences. Many of these sound exciting and entertaining, but I’m saying no to all of them. Why? I already spend most of my weekends in front of a keyboard catching up with what I couldn’t do during the week and the extra time needed for presentation slides was just killing me. I wanted to make sure I was saying something fresh and interesting every time and that’s pretty hard work. That coupled with overly onerous rules on what can and can’t be said means that it was increasingly taxing. I hope that I’ll get back into conferences later in the year – I genuinely enjoy the experience and the fact that you get in front of a lot of people who care about e-government (why else would they be at a conference?) who often ask intelligent and well-thought out questions that help shape my own thinking. After all, the best questions are ones that you don’t know the answer to that force you to think hard about what you really mean and how you can do it.
So, to all those who’d like me to speak, sorry – not this time. Try again in 6 months or so.